Tangy and bright Cranberry Orange Sauce is delicious served on everything from ice cream to sandwiches! 

Cook like a gourmet chef and impress everyone with this super simple, homemade recipe. The citrusy sauce is made with orange juice, cranberries, and orange liqueur for a combination of tangy and sweet that will tickle the taste buds! 

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We Love Cranberry Sauce With Orange

  • We love how easy to make this cranberry orange sauce is, but it tastes super special!
  • With just 6 ingredients and a fast cook time, what’s not to love!
  • The Grand Marnier Liqueur gives it a deep and complex flavor.
  • It’s the best sauce for jalapeno or cranberry meatballs. Or use it as a new twist to the traditional cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving.

Ingredients and Variations

THE JUICE – Freshly squeezed orange juice is recommended for this recipe because it gives this sauce a delicious, tangy taste. If fresh oranges are not available, then use unsweetened orange juice.

CRANBERRIES – Fresh or frozen cranberries will work well. Once cranberries are added to the sauce, they can be crushed with a wooden spoon for a smoother consistency if you like.

ORANGE LIQUEUR – Grand Marnier or Cointreau is the preferred liqueur for this recipe. Although orange liqueur is optional, it adds an unmistakable depth of flavor to the sauce.

ingredients to make Cranberry Orange Sauce

How To Make Cranberry Sauce

This sauce is so simple to make:

  1. Bring orange juice and sugar to a boil (per the recipe below).
  2. Add the cranberries, zest, and cinnamon to the pan until it comes to a boil again.
  3. During the last minute, add the liqueur and stir. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

To make in the Instant Pot:

  1. Pour all the ingredients into the Instant Pot, except for the liqueur
  2. Seal the steam release button
  3. Cook on high for 2 minutes. Then turn the Instant Pot off
  4. When all the steam has been released, then open the lid
  5. Add the liqueur and stir. Adjust the sugar to taste

Tips and Tricks

  • Remember to add the liqueur at the last minute of cooking, stir and then remove from heat. Liqueur comes to a boil quickly and can burn easily. When it is removed from the heat and as it cools, the sauce will thicken and become jellied.
  • Taste the cranberry sauce. If it isn’t sweet enough, then add sugar 1 teaspoon at a time until it reaches the desired sweetness.
  • And don’t forget to remove the cinnamon stick!

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What To Do With Leftover Cranberry Sauce

How long does cranberry sauce last? Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Can you freeze cranberry sauce? Yes! It can be frozen and will keep its flavor for up to 2 months.

Other ideas for leftovers? Try it alongside an Easy Turkey Pot Pie, or scoop some into a turkey wrap or rollup. Use it as the berry sauce component in Baked Brie With Berries. But the best way to use it is as the jelly topping on classic peanut butter toast! Bon Appetit!

Other Easy Sauces To Try!

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Cranberry Orange Sauce

This sweet and tart cranberry orange sauce is quick and easy, with a gourmet flavor!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Author Candace



  • 1 cup orange juice freshly squeezed preferred
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 12 ounces cranberries fresh or frozen
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest zest of one orange, optional
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 ounce orange liqueur like Grand Marnier or Cointreau, optional


  • Add orange juice and sugar to a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil on medium heat.
  • Add cranberries, orange zest if using, and cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil again. Reduce heat and simmer for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally. If you prefer smaller pieces of cranberry, break up with the wooden spoon as you stir. Add orange liqueur if using, during the last minute of cooking, and stir.
  • Remove from heat. Remove cinnamon stick if desired. Cool completely to thicken, then refrigerate.


Makes about 2 cups.
Will last for 2 weeks in the refrigerator, or can be frozen.
5 from 7 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 83 | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 101mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 90IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information does not include optional ingredients or garnish and is an estimate. It may change based on actual ingredients and cooking methods used.

Course Dessert, Dips, Dressing, Side Dish
Cuisine American

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About the author

I am a wife, mother of two, and professional accountant. I love fantastic food, and it is so often the center of our lives, from everyday dinner, to family gatherings, and special evenings at fabulous restaurants. I have always loved cooking and baking, with my mom and grandma, and now, with my daughter and son. I love trying new recipes while enjoying my favorites too. I’m so happy to share them with you.
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